Greg Wyshynski

  • Sidney Crosby and Matt Murray: The Kid and the kid quiet critics

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 16 hrs ago

    TAMPA, Fla. – Sidney Crosby and Matt Murray sat together in front of microphones after the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Game 6 victory at the Tampa Bay Lightning. One is The Kid, despite being 28 years old, hat turned forward. The other is the kid, turning 22 on Wednesday, hat turned backward. 

    Both answered their doubters and critics in their own way, willing the Eastern Conference Final to a Game 7 on Thursday night with a 5-2 win. 

    But Crosby came through.

    “He's exceptional,” said forward Matt Cullen, “and that was an unbelievable goal.”

    This will be Crosby’s first Game 7 since 2014, a 2-1 semifinal loss to the New York Rangers in which he didn’t tally a point – a loss that cost the jobs of both coach Dan Bylsma and GM Ray Shero.

    "I think that you go through different experiences, and you realize how hard it is to get these kind of opportunities,” said Crosby. “As a group, we've been through a lot and want to make the most of this opportunity.”

    Did the game on the bench help clear his head after getting yanked in Game 4?


  • Lightning lose goal, lose pucks and lose chance to end Penguins

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 17 hrs ago

    TAMPA, Fla. – It happened again.

    The Tampa Bay Lightning, with a chance to close out their opponent in the Eastern Conference Final, lose Game 6 on home ice. All the Lightning talked about leading up to Tuesday night’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins were the lessons they learned from last season’s blowout loss to the New York Rangers in the same scenario.

    About not squandering opportunities like this. About outplaying a foe that they knew would enter their building skating for their playoff lives.

    And yet it happened again.

    “It’s disappointing. Nothing we can do about it now,” said forward Brian Boyle, who scored twice in the third period of their 5-2 loss to the Penguins.

    The Lightning were sloppy with the puck, turning it over 17 times. Consider that they had one giveaway in the entirety of their Game 5 win.

    “We weren’t getting out of the zone. They outworked us at times during the first 40, and we can’t let that happen.”

    Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said it started with a phone call from video coach Andy Saucier.


  • Penguins, Crosby force Game 7 vs. Lightning with 5-2 win

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 18 hrs ago

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    TAMPA, Fla. – For the second straight season, the Tampa Bay Lightning failed to close out an opponent in an Eastern Conference Final Game 6 at home. 

    The good news is that they went on to defeat the New York Rangers in Game 7 last year, earning a trip to the Stanley Cup Final.

    The bad news is that the Pittsburgh Penguins aren’t the New York Rangers.

    The Penguins forced a Game 7 on Tuesday night with a 5-2 win over the Lightning. Sidney Crosby had a goal and an assist after going scoreless in his previous two games. Rookie goalie Matt Murray – pulled in Tampa two periods into Game 4, and benched in favor of Marc-Andre Fleury in Game 5 – made 28 saves.

    It wasn't the blowout loss the Lightning suffered last season, thanks to an impressive third-period rally. But it was still a loss.

    The first period saw the Lightning lose a goal to a coach’s challenge and give up a goal thanks to a delay of game call.

    But in the third period, Brian Boyle happened.



  • Stanley Cup Final starts Monday, potential ‘Ninja Warrior’ conflict

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 22 hrs ago

    The Tampa Bay Lightning and the San Jose Sharks are poised to close our their respective series in the next 48 hours. Or, perhaps, have the conference finals roll to a Game 7. Either way, the winners will have a relatively quick turnaround, as the NHL’s championship round begins on Monday. 

    The NHL announced that the 2016 Stanley Cup Final starts on Monday, a.k.a. May 30 a.k.a. Memorial Day a.k.a. ‘sorry we just ruined your beach plans, everyone.’

    Media Day for the Final will be held Sunday in either Pittsburgh, San Jose or St. Louis, depending on who advances.

    The start time for every game of the Final will be 8 p.m. ET, on NBC Sports Group and CBC and TVA on Canada.


    (all start times 8 p.m., ET)

    Game 1 - Monday, May 30

    Game 2 - Wednesday, June 1

    Game 3 - Saturday, June 4

    Game 4 - Monday, June 6

    Game 5* - Thursday, June 9

    Game 6* - Sunday, June 12

    Game 7* - Wednesday, June 15

    Your eyes don’t deceive you: That’s a two-day break between games from Game 2 to Game 3 and then beginning after Game 4, pushing this thing into the middle of June, potentially. 



  • Bruins sign Kevan Miller to 4-year deal, for some reason

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    Kevan Miller was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, after making $800,000 last season. Instead, he’ll make $2.5 million next season, and three more after that, as the Boston Bruins re-signed him to a new four-year deal on Tuesday. 

    From the Bruins:

    In his third season with Boston, Miller competed in a career-high 71 games and also established career highs in goals (five), assists (13), points (18) and penalty minutes (53). He posted the second-best plus/minus rating on the team (+15). Miller played in his 100th NHL game on November 5, 2015 at Washington. In total, the 28-year-old blueliner has played in 159 games at the NHL level – all with Boston – racking up 8-23=31 totals, while amassing 106 penalty minutes. He has appeared in 11 postseason contests with the Bruins and registered two assists.

    So this signing … yeah.

    Miller’s $2.5 million salary joins those of Dennis Seidenberg ($4 million) and Adam McQuaid ($3 million) as too much investment for too little return. In Miller’s case, he’s a bottom-pairing defenseman that’s signed a four-year term, which is nutty.

    It wasn’t.



  • Shirtless David Puddy poses with David Puddy goalie mask (Photo)

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    The classic sitcom “Seinfeld” gave the pop culture world many enduring legacies – Festivus, shrinkage, Julia-Louis Dreyfus – while also delivering one for hockey culture: David Puddy, lunk-headed boyfriend of Elaine Benes, and his face/chest painted support of the New Jersey Devils.

    Everybody now: ‘Gotta support the team.’

    The visage of his red and green face was immortalized on the goalie mask of Scott Wedgewood of the New Jersey Devils, whose throwback Devils lid was pretty sweet.

    David Gunnarsson, the creator of the mask, shared the photo above on his official Facebook page, as the great Patrick Warburton was given a mask with his painted-up David Puddy on it. “it was a huge honor to create and paint it for you,” he wrote.

    [Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey contest today]

    And with that, the pop culture circle is complete. But please don’t try to touch his mask without asking.



  • What the heck is going on with the Florida Panthers?

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    For a while there, it looked like Scott Luce was going to outlast the Panthers in Florida. 

    He was involved in scouting for 14 years. That’s seven head coaches and five general managers in Florida Panthers’ terms. As director of scouting, he oversaw the construction of the Panthers team that won the Atlantic Division this season and produced two rookies of the year in Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad.

    Luce was promoted to director of player personnel last season. "Scott has done a tremendous job leading and preparing our scouting staff for the last several seasons," said GM Dale Tallon in July 2015.

    Less than a year later, Luce is out of a job and Tallon is no longer the general manager. And yet new GM Tom Rowe claims that Tallon was one of the voices calling for the dismissal of the guy he literally just promoted to the job last July.

    [Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey contest today]

    What the hell is going on here?

    From Elliotte Friedman:


  • Matt Murray named Game 6 starter for Penguins, facing elimination

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    TAMPA, Fla. – With their season on the line, Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan has decided to go back to rookie goalie Matt Murray after starter Marc-Andre Fleury took a loss in Game 5. 

    “Matt Murray is our starting goaltender,” said Sullivan, of Tuesday's Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Final at the Tampa Bay Lightning, “and the reason, just like we make all of our lineup decisions, is that we try to put players on the ice that we think try to give us the best chance to win.”

    The Lightning lead the series, 3-2. 

    [Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey contest today]

    Murray is 9-4-1 in the playoffs, with a .923 save percentage and a 2.33 goals-against average. The last time he played in Tampa, he was pulled after giving up four goals in the first two periods, opening the door for Fleury’s Game 4 start.

    Fleury gave up four goals to the Lightning, losing in overtime, in his first start since late March.


  • Rating the Sidney Crosby media hot takes after Game 5 loss

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    The Pittsburgh Penguins are one loss away from elimination in the Eastern Conference Final. They’re also two wins away from making the Stanley Cup Final, but that level of optimism and appreciation of their accomplishments is soooooo very Game 3.

    As a result, captain Sidney Crosby is getting called out for the team’s lack of success and his own struggles, having turned in a poor effort in Game 5 against the Tampa Bay Lightning. That’s three games after Crosby’s overtime game-winner earned accolades from media and his teammates, but again, that’s sooooo very Game 2. 

    We’ve decided to spotlight three sizzling hot takes on Crosby and the Penguins’ star players that were published in the wake of their Game 5 loss to the Lightning. There were no doubt more of them, but these three actually singed our eyelashes as we read them because the takes were so hot.


    Here’s Dejan Kovacevic on (Sub. Required):





  • Lightning vow to avoid all manner of traps vs. Penguins in Game 6

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    TAMPA, Fla. – Evgeni Malkin said it, on the eve of Game 6 in the Eastern Conference Final: “I believe in my team. I believe in myself. We can come back to Pittsburgh for sure.”

    You might need a taffy pull to stretch that to a Game 6 guarantee, but that’s still one of the Pittsburgh Penguins veteran leaders saying the series could surely go seven games.

    “Let’s be honest: What’s he supposed to say? ‘Oh, we’re done, we’re just going down there for a formality?’” asked Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper, moments after his team stepped off their plane onto home terra firma Monday morning.

    “Of course they’re going to say they’re going to win. They’re a good team and a confident group. But we feel the same way. Look, you gotta win four. We’re a little bit closer to four than they are, but you gotta win four. And that’s all our group is thinking about.”

    The Lightning had a chance to win that fourth game in Game 6 last season too, against the New York Rangers at Amalie Arena. Instead, the Rangers blew the doors off them, winning 7-3 after taking a 5-1 lead by the 7:13 mark of the third period.

    Cooper said there was a bit of a premature victory lap last season for the Lightning.